Italian cleaning sector offers expertise on coronavirus

17th of September 2020
Italian cleaning sector offers expertise on coronavirus

Anna Garbagna in Italy on how sector associations have been key in offering expertise during Covid-19.

For many months, the Covid-19 emergency has been occupying our lives, modifying them and changing how we plan for our future. It could not be any different for the professional cleaning sector, which has been in the front line from the start. The crucial importance of cleaning and sanitisation operations to limit or completely avoid the spreading of the virus has been proven.

Right from the beginning industry association Afidamp has been working to become a source of information, providing useful advice to improve understanding of what we all can do.

The opportunity to talk about cleaning in the retail environment was given by the conference Covid-19 and Retail. How co-exist? There, Roberto Galli, president of Afidamp COM. highlighted how cleaning is considered by 47 per cent of Italians to be an indicator of the quality of life and also of safety.

While the association has always promoted the importance of hygiene in order to understand how to treat different types of dirt, particularly the invisible dirt often responsible for infections and development of diseases, this has become even more significant during the pandemic which tragically brought to the fore a topic which has been too often underestimated. It has been brought back to the attention of all citizens that actions can be really decisive, even something as simple as correct hand washing.

Lately Afidamp’s commitment has been in producing material and documents to supply guidelines for operating with proper hygienic practices. Specifically for the retail sector, it has developed the document Protocol for Good Practice of Sanitisation in Supermarkets which contains important information on how to operate in large retail areas.

Already available to users and downloadable from the association website, the protocol is based on the principle the company must guarantee the cleaning and the hygiene of the premises with at least twice daily frequency and based on opening hours. For the final clean at the end of the day, disinfection of rooms, environments, workstations, and bathrooms must be carried out.

Furthermore, it is advisable to pay particular attention and increased frequency to cleaning and disinfection of all high-touch surfaces  - washroom areas, trolley handles and shopping baskets, POS terminals, handles, keyboards, switches and push buttons.

It should be said that before any disinfection operation it is necessary to perform a thorough cleaning of the surfaces because the active effects of the disinfectant products are neutralised by dirt. The document also reminds us of the importance of using professional products specifically designed to tackle types of dirt and contamination which are more complex than those of households.

A few simple rules can make the difference. It is therefore crucial, as highlighted by Galli, that the retail sector provides all the necessary information to properly trained cleaning staff who must use professional products with technical sheets that clearly explain their use, in order to guarantee hygiene for customers.


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